Nyesom Wike, the governor of Rivers State Governor, has placed a bounty on two notorious kidnappers and gang leaders from Ahoada East and West Local Government Areas simply known as VIP and Comasi.
The governor disclosed this in Port Harcourt on Tuesday when he received in audience traditional rulers and leaders of thought of Ekpeye nationality. He did not say how much he would pay for the arrest of the kidnappers.
Wike also warned secessionist groups to stay out of Rivers State, vowing that his government would not allow any group plotting to secede from Nigeria to annex Rivers State.
The governor said his administration was prepared to protect the state and its peoples against any attempt force them into their separatist agenda.
“Rivers State does not belong to any other place. It is an autonomous state. Nobody in other State can come and tell us that we are with them, No.
“So, I will not allow anybody to enter this State to tell us that we are part of them. We will do everything we can to protect the interest of our State.
“We are a friendly people. We will allow anybody to come here and do business. But nobody should go beyond doing business to hoist unnecessary flag here. We will not take it.”
The governor advised Ekpeye people not to leave anything to chance anymore, but to be vigilant to know what happens around and within their communities.
He urged them to report movements that they do not trust, that looks suspicious so that proper action can be taken to avert any possible attack.
“Nigeria has collapsed. Security has also collapsed. There is no day you won’t hear ten people have been killed, 20 people have been killed, 30 have been kidnapped.
“There is no assurance of protection of life anymore. You owe it now to yourselves to protect your life. Be vigilant.
“When they say there is curfew, obey. It is for your own interest. Now that we have put that curfew, we are watching how crime rate is going down.”
Governor Wike, who blamed failure of parents to inculcate moral values and discipline in their children for the prevailing social vices, urged the leaders of Ekpeye nationality to collaborate with government to tackle the menace of kidnapping and other criminal activities in both Ahoada West and Ahoada East Local Government Areas.
Speaking further, Governor Wike enjoined the chairmen of the two council areas, including the traditional rulers to stop administering the area from Port Harcourt, the State capital.
He urged them to relocate to their various communities, live among their people, understand their problems, work together with their wards and solve their problems.
“Why don’t you stay at home and solve the problem at home. Each time, I see most of you in Port Harcourt. What you are looking for I do not know. You are traditional rulers, stay at home and know what is happening and report to government.”
The governor charged the two council chairmen to become more responsive to the yearning of their people for the dividends of democracy.
“The two council chairmen, you’re not doing well. I believe when God gives you opportunity, it is for you to show that you’re elected by the people and let them feel your presence.”
Leader of the delegation, Prof. Dulu Appah said Ekpeye people are grateful to Governor Wike for the numerous development projects sited in the area.
“Indeed for us, the Ekpeye Ethnic Nation we make bold to say without fear of contradiction that the democratic dividend we have enjoyed during your administration has made us the envy of other ethnic groups in the State”, he said.
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